Government Files First Criminal Charges In BP Oil Spill

Fire boats battle a fire at the off shore oil rig Deepwater Horizon in April of 2010.

Fire boats battle a fire at the off shore oil rig Deepwater Horizon in April of 2010. U.S. Coast Guard/Getty Images

Originally published on NPR by EYDER PERALTA

“The first criminal charges in connection with the BP oil spill have been filed against a former BP engineer named Kurt Mix,” NPR’s Carrie Johnson reports exclusively. Carrie just told our Newscast unit that Mix has been charged with obstruction of justice for allegedly deleting text messages after the spill. The texts were related to the amount of oil gushing into the Gulf. Mix will make his first appearence in court today.

Carrie adds that there has been an expectation that criminal charges would be brought against individuals, but this is the first person charged since the spill happened two years ago.

These are preliminary charges and a law enforcement official says there are more charges to come, Carrie reports.

We’ll have more on this story as it develops.

Update at 12:59 p.m. ET. Operation Top Kill:

The Justice Department has now made the arrest and charges public, issuing a press release on its website. Essentially the Justice Department claims that Mix, who at the time was “a drilling and completions project engineer for BP,” deleted hundreds of text messages even after he was notified that he was legally obligated to preserve them…

Continue reading on NPR.



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